Chance Me/ Feedback on Personal Brand

Hi! I am currently in the process of researching schools to apply to and getting ready to start on my applications. I would love it if I could get a bit of feedback on my overall brand as an applicant. I will be applying to well known schools like Andover, Choate, SPS and probably some hidden gems like Kent, Hill and Asheville. What are my strengths and weaknesses? Are there schools you think I should consider researching? How are my ECs? I think it would be nice to have feedback from different members of the community.


-SSAT-I haven’t taken the official test. I’ve taken a couple of practice tests, and I’m generally scoring in around the 90% percentile. I feel like I have what it takes to get 95%+ on the official test, but I know practice test scores and real test scores can differ greatly. I’ll most likely get above 80%.

6th: All low As and high Bs except for Art and Social Students, where I got low Bs. Note about art: I am a graphic artist (I’ll elaborate later) and I didn’t figure out that I don’t like doing art until it was too late.
7th: First semester, most of my grades were around 95, with my lowest being math where I got an 91. Note: My grandma sadly past away first semester, which made math which I already struggle with even harder. I studied again, and again, and again and managed to take my grade an 83 first quarter to a 98 second quarter. My second semester everything was high As, with a couple of 99s.
8th: No grades yet, but I feel like I can maintain high grades.

-Standardized Tests- (should I submit these?)
For my 7th Grade SC Standardized test, I believe I had an 81 percentile in Math and a 99 percentile in ELA in the state. 6th had similar results, slightly lower.


Interviews: I sometimes have trouble getting all of my thoughts into words, but I’m confident I’ll be able to work it out with some practice.

Essays: Essays are a strong suit of mine.

Teacher/Personal Recs: My teachers are all quite lovely, and the teachers I have have for the past couple of years generally think quite highly of me. However, my current Math and ELA teacher I don’t really know (I’ve seen them 3 times in person so far) and I have no idea how to build bonds with them virtually.

Principal/Counselor Rec: Most likely will not be that strong. I’ve only spoken with my Principal a couple of times in my 3 years at my school. Boarding School Admissions isn’t a big thing where I am from, but I could possibly ask my school Counselor if she could help me out.


Sports (if any): None. I’m absolutely terrified because I have none.

Instruments (if any): I have been singing for as long as I can remember, but more as a hobby. I might be able to work with my chorus teacher.

Other ECs (if any): (this is just a sample, I have more)

  • I run a online ecommerce store that I have completely designed myself that is pulling in thousands of dollars per month. I developed a 'Style Quiz' that customers can take to get a custom canvas recommendation based on a number of factors. I do all advertising by myself, and we advertise to around 15k a month. Pinterest specifically loved how we did advertising so much that an advertising manager reacher out to our business, saying they would love to form a partnership where we would get to test run new features. I can provide more info if needed. One interesting factor is how our company gives back. Much of our customer base is female, and we give a portion of proceeds and canvases to females in need.
  • FLL Robotics- Last year, my team made it to state with various regardings applauding our team's robot and overall game. At state, we got the Inspiration award. We were top 6 out of 360+ teams.
  • Programming- After looking at my grades, you might be surprised to learn this but I am a coding nerd. I have been learning for about a year now, and I am quite skilled in HTML, CSS and Javascript, and I have projects that show my expertise. I have had business owners look at my work and ask me to design their websites.
  • Fiverr- This has been kinda discontinued, but I would happy to pick it up again. I've ran a design freelancing gig where I've designed for customers all over the world, while maintaining a 4.9 star rating and always delivering on time. I had around 50 customers the first time I did it, and over the summer I opened up the gig and had another 75 customers.
  • Award- I was chosen as a CDB Finalist but unfortunately due to things I can't control, I wasn't able to continue on with the scholarship. They still are offering to help me with boarding school admissions, which is quite nice.


State or Country: South Carolina
Current School Type: Public
Ethnicity: Nigerian American ??
Gender: Female
Grade Applying For: 9th
Age: 13
Hook: URM, Female in STEM
Financial Aid/Full Pay: Still Deciding. Probably some financial aid.

Aaah @skieurope I just noticed I posted in the wrong subsection. Could you please move it?

Nevermind, it ended up showing I posted it in the ‘Chances’ area a few minutes after I posted. Sorry for the confusion.

I did.

That’s because I moved it. ?

On another note, I don’t chance, but I will comment. Unless one is Kylie Jenner or Arianna Grande, I personally find the notion of a young person having a personal brand to be an anathema. Sorry.

When I work on businesses, the most important thing for me is completely making sure that everything the constitutes as a business’s presence- the website, reviews, blogs, press. etc- fits into the brand of the company, whether it means that the brand is more authentic and down to earth, or luxurious and high class. I kinda draw a parallel to this when it comes to admissions. Whether you call it a brand or an image or a narrative, or whatever, it’s important to connect every part of your application to each other, give adcomms and idea of what you are passionate about, and most importantly, how you will fit into their community.

I don’t think they’re looking for “packaged” students. That would turn me off as an AO. I would think the student was trying too hard.

I agree it would turn me off if a student was trying too hard, which is why it is so important to show your true authentic self WHILE also showcasing your passions. I guess brand might not be the best word to use.

I still think that it would be best to structure your application so it highlights what you are good at while still allowing your personality to show true. You should have a application that has no focus whatsoever, but at the same time, you shouldn’t have a application that is too “fake”. There is a balance that has to be made.

Before I comment, I would say that I have no special knowledge of what the admissions folks want. I’m a Dad of a current 8th grader thinking of applying to the same types of school as you. What I would say is that if my son does attend one of these schools, I hope you are there too and the two of you become friends. I think you are a rock star and probably a wonderful person as well. Go for what you want, and good luck!

You know that I am captain of the @mssweeteaa fan club and I have been since we “met” (virtually) last year! And I believe with all my heart that ANY of these schools would be incredibly lucky to have you. So I won’t comment on chances. I will, however, address the “brand” issue. I know your background and I absolutely understand what you mean when you call yourself a brand. I think “packaging” is actually a quite useful way to think about your application for each school. That said, like good acting or directing, it’s only good if no one ever catches you doing it.

So if any tiny whiff of packaging or branding comes across, it will make the applicant seem very unlikable. And remember the rule of thumb: you want the AO to read your application and say to him/herself: gosh I would love to have lunch with this person and learn more!

The fact that @ameridad (wisely IMO) wants you to be his child’s peer is evidence you are on your way. (And I’ve told you before: I hope we get to cross paths at revisits this year! My DD3 would be hugely blessed to attend school with you!)

The fact that several other folks had a not-great reaction to the use of the word brand is evidence that you don’t want to be caught thinking like a marketer, except when you are talking about your businesses. (Even if that’s a framework that works for you. And it works for me too as a business person. But it’s the behind-the-scenes sausage-making of your application process.)